Florida should be a treasure hunter’s dream come true. Except it’s not.
Its sand and sea hide riches of the past, thanks to the state’s Spanish colonizers of the 1500s and treasure-laden ships that sank off shores.
Until recently, you didn’t have needed to dig very deep to find valuable booty. With a metal detector, you easily could unearthed treasures left behind by forgetful beachgoers.
A Tiffany & Co. platinum wedding band worth more than $2,000, a 3/4-carat diamond ring, a 2-carat ruby ring and a mint-condition Rolex Submariner watch are just a few of the riches Gary Drayton recovered during his metal-hunting days. His best find was a 9-carat Spanish-era emerald ring.
But that may be the end of it for Drayton and his treasure-seeking ilk. Read more.
A HOARD of Roman coins worth hundreds of pounds was unearthed in a farmer’s field in Sheffield - and this week was declared treasure.
The five republican silver denarii were discovered by a metal detector enthusiast on land at Plumbley Hall Farm, near Mosborough.
The find was reported to the authorities before the coins were seized by the British Museum - and on Tuesday assistant deputy coroner David Urpeth ruled they were the property of the Crown.
Mr Urpeth told Sheffield Coroner’s Court that the finder of the coins - Edward Bailey - would receive a cash reward, along with the landowner, Raymond Woolley.
They were unearthed between May 28 and June 3 last year. Read more.
Residents of a town under siege by the Roman army about 2,000 years ago buried two hoards of treasure in the town’s citadel — treasure recently excavated by archaeologists.
More than 200 coins, mainly bronze, were found along with “various items of gold, silver and bronze jewelry and glass vessels” inside an ancient fortress within the Artezian settlement in the Crimea (in Ukraine), the researchers wrote in the most recent edition of the journal Ancient Civilizations from Scythia to Siberia.
"The fortress had been besieged. Wealthy people from the settlement and the neighborhood had tried to hide there from the Romans. They had buried their hoards inside the citadel," Nikolaï Vinokurov, a professor at Moscow State Pedagogical University, explained. Read more.
A treasure hunter thought he had discovered a valuable archaeological site when his metal detector uncovered antique tableware believed to be several hundred years old including candlesticks and fruit bowls hidden in a wood at Alland in Lower Austria.
But archaeologists quickly realized that all was not as it seemed when they found that the treasure was wrapped in a newspaper from 1979. Police were called and believe that the buried treasure was probably stolen property that had been hidden by a thief who for unknown reasons was either unable to recover it or had forgotten where it was buried.
They have now released images of the find said to be worth several thousand euros to see if the original owner can be traced. Read more.
A silver treasure from the 12th century has been found on the Baltic island Gotland, where over 600 pieces of silver coins have been unearthed, according to reports in local media.
“This is an amazing find. It’s unbelievable that treasures of this scale exist here on Gotland,” Marie Louise Hellquist of Gotland’s County Administrative Board (Länsstyrelsen) told local newspaper Hela Gotland.
The medieval treasure was uncovered last Monday, as the landowner was moving soil. Some 500 pieces of coin were discovered in the field, and following further searches conducted once archaeologists arrived on Wednesday, that figure has swollen considerably.
“In total we’ve reached 650 pieces, so far,” Hellquist said. Read more.
The US Supreme Court on Monday declined to take up the appeal of American treasure hunters who were forced earlier this year to surrender $500 million in silver and gold coins they recovered from the wreck of a Spanish warship 3,000 feet deep in international waters.
The high court took the action without comment.
A federal judge in Tampa, Fla., and the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta ordered Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc. of Tampa to surrender the coins and other artifacts to Spain.
The courts ruled that the recovered cargo had come from the Spanish frigate Mercedes, which exploded and sank in 1804 while returning from South America. The ship’s remains and its cargo were the sovereign property of Spain, the courts said.
Urging the high court to take up the case, lawyers for Odyssey Marine argued that Spanish sovereignty did not apply to the coins and other artifacts because Spain was not in possession of the cargo. Read more.
A bronze, Viking-era “piggy-bank” containing thousands silver coins dating from the 11th century has been unearthed on the Baltic island of Gotland in what Swedish archaeologists have described as a “fantastic” treasure find.
The silver treasure was found last Thursday during an archaeological examination of a field in Rone, on southern Gotland.
"We had an expert out there with a metal detector who got a signal that he’s found something pretty big," Per Widerström, an archaeologist with the Gotland Museum, told The Local.
The same field has yielded previous treasure finds, including a well-known discovery from the 1880s, when a collection of nearly 6,000 coins dating from the 11th century were uncovered.
The field’s reputation made it a target for amateur treasure hunters and plunderers, prompting the Gotland county administrative board to commission a survey of the area as a preventative measure against any further plundering of valuable archaeological finds.
After being alerted to the new find, Widerström and colleague Majvor Östergren went back out to the field to figure out exactly what lay beneath the surface. Read more.
MADRID (AP) — Spain on Monday rejected Peru's claim to a huge multimillion-dollar undersea treasure recovered from the wreckage of a ship that had left from Lima's port more than 200 years ago.
Spain recovered the nearly 600,000 coins — mostly silver but a few made of gold — on Saturday after they were flown to Madrid from the United States. That marked the culmination of Spain’s five-year battle in U.S. courts with a Florida deep-sea exploration firm that in 2007 found the remains of a ship believed to be the Spanish frigate Nuestra Senora de las Mercedes.
The Florida-based Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc. found the shipwreck off Portugal near the Strait of Gibraltar, taking the booty first to the British colony of Gibraltar at Spain’s southern tip and then to Florida.
On Monday, Spain’s education, culture and sports minister, Jose Ignacio Wert, told a packed news conference the final U.S. court ruling stated that “the legacy of the Mercedes belongs to Spain.” Read more.